What Is Azure Blueprint? How It Can Help In 2024?

February 14th, 2019
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What Is Azure Blueprint

When someone sets out to build their home, the architect gives them a blueprint of how the house will finally look like in the end. Without this blueprint, it will all be a mess, with no clear instructions on what to do and how to do it. The same is the case when building Azure services. A proper blueprint is necessary before commencing the building of Azure services to keep a track of timely deployments. In this blog, Microsoft Azure Blueprint is the focus. Before we see how it helps in 2024 and what is the lifecycle it follows, let's understand- what is Azure Blueprint?

What is Azure Blueprint?

So, what is Azure Blueprint? Basically, Microsoft Azure is a set of cloud services that aids organizations in meeting the business challenges. It is leveraged by organizations for building, managing, and deploying apps on a global network using different frameworks and tools as per needs.

Azure Blueprint plays a huge role here as it aids cloud architects and engineers in rapidly deploying services as per the company standards. Azure Blueprints are employed in a very similar manner as traditional blueprints. Azure Blueprints are extensively used by IT engineers for designing and deploying a cyclic collection of Azure resources that are in line with certain standards and requirements. Objects are replicated to multiple Azure regions to provide both highly available and low-latency access to those objects, irrespective of where the Azure Blueprints objects are deployed. With Azure Blueprint, IT professionals can undertake the orchestration of resource templates deployment, and many other Azure artifacts. This includes resource groups, policy assignments, role assignments, and resource manager templates.

Why Microsoft Azure Is The Best Choice?

Those who are interested in building their career in the field of cloud computing will find themselves benefiting a lot by learning Microsoft Azure. But why is Microsoft Azure the best choice? These points are the ones to know about.

Why Microsoft Azure?
  1. Scalable & Ductile

Microsoft Azure is used for creating applications that can scale for ten to ten million users easily without any extra coding. Azure storage provides secure, performance-efficient, safe, and ductile storage services in the cloud.

  1. Hybrid 

Microsoft Azure has plenty of hybrid capabilities that make it extremely unique. It enables a consistent platform and easy mobility between public and on-premise cloud. Many hybrid connections are provided, including caches, ExpressRoute, content delivery networks, and VPNs.

  1. Intelligence & Analytics Capabilities

Microsoft Azure promotes NoSQL and SQL data services, along with built-in support to help dig deeper into data. This aids in uncovering key insights to enhance business and decision making processes.

  1. Highly Secure

Microsoft Azure is designed on SDL (security development lifecycle), a leading security process. With security at its core, private services and data is highly secure on Microsoft Azure Cloud. It is trusted by US government institutions.

You May Also Like- Top Microsoft Azure Certifications To Consider In 2024

The Lifecycle of An Azure Blueprint

Lifecycle of Azure Blueprint

Most resources in Azure have a natural lifecycle. Blueprints in Azure are not much different from traditional blueprints. These are also created to be deployed. When they are no longer needed, they are deleted. Azure Blueprints provide support for typical (CI/CD) pipelines for organizations that manage IaC (infrastructure as code).

Here is a brief about the lifecycle stages of an Azure blueprint.

  1. Creating and editing a blueprint
  2. Publishing the blueprint
  3. Creating and editing a new version of the blueprint
  4. Publishing a new version of the blueprint
  5. Deleting a specific version of the blueprint
  6. Deleting the blueprint

1. Creating And Editing A Blueprint

To create a blueprint, first add artifacts to it. Then, save to a subscription or a management group. Finally, insert a unique version/ unique name to it. The blueprint is now in a Draft mode but cannot be assigned yet. However, it can still be changed and updated.

Creating And Editing A Blueprint

A never-published blueprint in Draft mode displays a different icon on the ‘Blueprint Definitions' page than ones that have been published. The Latest Version is also displayed as ‘Draft' for these never published blueprints.

Creating And Editing Blueprint

2. Publishing A Blueprint

Once all planned changes have been made to a blueprint in ‘Draft' mode, it can be ‘Published' and made available for assignment. The Published version of the blueprint cannot be altered.

Once a blueprint is published, it is displayed with a different icon than the one found in the Draft section. It displays the version number in the column titled ‘Latest Version'.

3. Creating and Editing A New Version of the Blueprint

It is not possible to alter the published version of a blueprint. Nonetheless, a new version of the blueprint can still be added to the existing blueprint or even modified as necessary.

It is also possible to make changes to an already existing blueprint, all you need to do is edit it. Once the new changes are saved, the blueprint will showcase ‘Unpublished Changes'. These changes now makeup the new Draft version of the blueprint.

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4. Publishing A New Version of the Blueprint

To assign an edited version of the blueprint, it has to be first published. When the blueprint has unpublished changes, which have not been published yet, the ‘Publish Blueprint' button will appear on the page titled ‘edit blueprint'.

If this button is not available, then that means the blueprint is already published and there are no unpublished changes.

Note:
1. It is possible for a single blueprint to have various published versions. Each of these can each be assigned individually to subscriptions.
2. Same steps can be used to publish a new blueprint as the ones followed for publishing one with unpublished changes.

5. Deleting a Specific Version of the Blueprint

Each blueprint version is unique and thus, can be individually deleted too. Deleting a version of a blueprint doesn't have any impact on other versions of that blueprint.

Note:

A blueprint with active assignments cannot be deleted. Hence, you must first delete the assignments, and then it will be possible to delete the version.
1. Click on ‘All services' and search for and select ‘Policy' in the left pane. On the ‘Policy' page, click on ‘Blueprints'.
2. Select ‘Blueprint Definitions' from the page. Use filter options for locating the required blueprint and then delete a version of. To open the ‘Edit' page, click on it.
3. Click the ‘Published Versions' tab and locate the version you wish to delete.
4. Right-click on the target version > select ‘Delete This Version'.

6. Deleting The Blueprint

The core blueprint can also be deleted. If you delete the core blueprint, all blueprint versions of that blueprint will also get deleted. This includes the ‘Draft' and ‘Published' blueprints. Deleting the core blueprint will not remove the existing assignments of the blueprint versions.

Final Words

Azure Blueprints are quite similar to normal blueprints, and are also used in a similar fashion. Traditional blueprints are used by architects for designing and then constructing buildings to meet set specifications and standards. Similarly, Azure administrators and architects employ Azure Blueprints for designing and creating Azure solutions.

The lifecycle of an Azure Blueprint commences by creating a blueprint and then publishing it. New blueprints are created and published as needed, even editing on the way, if needed. Once the work is complete, architects can delete a specific version of the blueprint, and then delete the entire thing.

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